Early Returns

Lingering Unease From the Republican Debate

Jonathan Bernstein's morning links.

1. Dave Hopkins is correct that missing votes is no big deal for members of Congress.

2. The Mischiefs of Faction gang weighs in on the Republican debate. Julia Azari: “If you have to ask, there is no front-runner.”

3. See also Matthew Dickinson on the debate, at U.S. News.

4. Ross Douthat on the failure of Republican candidates to come up with a middle-class agenda.

5. Peter Suderman at Reason says the Republicans are “only tenuously in touch with policy reality."

6. I like Kevin Drum’s list of questions after the Republican debate, especially asking Carly Fiorina to release a draft of her three-page tax code.

7. Speaking of which, my View colleague Megan McArdle demolishes the idea of a three-page tax code. She may be too generous to the candidates about the quality of their Social Security discussion. But she’s right about their tax “plans” and about the lousy CNBC moderators, a theme that seems to unite liberals, conservatives, libertarians and political scientists.

8. Washington Post’s Paul Kane looks back as the Boehner era ends on Capitol Hill

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